Game #27: Sixers start their post-Solstice ascent

Mayan calendar

A shocking 99 to 80 WIN against a very good Atlanta Hawks team.

Maybe this whole Mayan thing was just about the 76ers. The 5 game losing streak is ended, the Sixers defense looked like a real defense, and this Born to Run squad finally ran on a tired opponent.

And most importantly, the impenetrable mystery of Andrew Bynum’s brushed down afro/mushroom cap/penis haircut is resolved.

Cornrows, guys. just growing out some cornrows, nothing more to see here…

bynum french braids 

Well that’s a relief, he seems a lot less like an insane person now. I feel fully comfortable giving this guy a 5 year contract. What? apparently it’s French Braids. I take it back, he’s still crazy…

On to The Game!

Holiday and Turner return! ushering a predictable return to a semi-functional offense and (more importantly) two competent perimeter defenders.

Less predictably, filled with solstice vigor, this idling Sixers crew looked like they were playing an NBA finals game, demonstrating the maniacal, disproportionate intensity that was the hallmark of the last 2 seasons.

shinto god

Additionally Collins appears to have left the wilderness of his delusionally conservative offensive scheme, and unleashed his player to attempt downcourt passes. No surprise, as Collins, a Shinto sorcerer (always sensitive to the motion of astronomical bodies) does his best work when the northern hemisphere is pivoting towards the sun…

Evidence:

2010-11 Season, with Philadelphia moving away from the Sun, Sixers get off to a woeful 3-13 start, stabalizing during the solstice (11-18), before surging to a .500 record in the waxing days of Spring

2011-12 Season. Sixers start hot! going 20-9 out of the shoot. What happened? NBA lockout eliminated the autumnal NBA schedule, Sixers play their first game clear of the solstice nader on December 26th!

2012-13 Season, Sixers play declines steadily with the the day length, finding a sudden revival on Dec 21st. Coincidence? unlikely…

This augers well..

winter solstice 2 winter_solstice

THE GOOD:

1) Sixers Defense: That felt real good, like when you stop banging your head against the wall. Here’s what Collins had to say post game giving his Ace of Spades, star of the game award to defensive coordinator, Micheal Curry “our ace of spades tonight is Micheal Curry. he puts his heart in soul into it. he’s been suffering [with the poor defense] the last few weeks. he’s never going to say anything. But he’s been suffering”. 

Tremendous ball pressure, tremendous disruptiveness. The kind of ferocity that makes a tired team quit. Sixers force 17 turnovers, including 2 SHOT CLOCK VIOLATIONS (!) Welcome back old friend.

2) Thaddeus Young, his heart is a furnace. all over the court, for 18pts/11rebs/4asts/5stls, and 1 drawn charge.

NBA: Atlanta Hawks at Philadelphia 76ers

3)Play of the game, wiith 3:12 to go in the third, Jrue misses a long jumper, Thad wolverines Josh Smith in a 7 second, 6 jump, 3 offensive rebound effort to fight the layup home. Sixers were up 13 at the time.

See it at the 1:29 mark

4) The return of Jrue Holiday. Didn’t light it up, but man, having a point guard helps. The passing/running Sixers tally 31 assists on 44 made baskets.

Here he is executing a sweet post entry pass after being inflated with helium by Sixers assistant Aaron McKie

holiday floating nut grab

5) Hawes shot selection: takes 6 of his 10 shots in the paint, including several post up. Yes, a Spencer Hawes post-up.

6) Kwame Brown, DNP COACHES DECISION

THE BAD:

Nothing was bad

THE UGLY:

With Sixers at 99 points, up 19, with the ball, 20 seconds to go in the game. Fans get a free big mac at 100 points. The crowd is on their feet. Turner begging to take a shot. Grinchy Doug Collins insists on holding it, the sanctity of the game more important than Big Macs. The Crowd…. well they disagreed…

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Footage now found. And Doug found the Christmas spirit and is footing the tab for the free big macs himself)

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